Wednesday 1 April 2020

CubCrafters Carbon Cubs of New Zealand

The next type of sport aircraft to appear on the New Zealand register was the Carbon Cub:

The Carbon Cub was developed in the mid 2000s by Cub Crafters Inc of Yakima, Washington State, and it was first introduced in 2007.  It is inspired by the Piper PA 18 Cub via the 100 HP Carbon Crafters Sport Cub S2.  The Carbon Cub is much lighter than the PA 18 due to the use of carbon-fibre parts including the cowling, spinner, airbox, cockpit interior panels and pilots seat and the wingtips.  The fuselage is welded chrome moly steel tube and is fabric covered.  The wingspan is one foot shorter than the PA 18.  It also is powered by a much more powerful 180 HP engine which gives much better performance and makes the aircraft a popular choice for back country flying.  It has been incrementally developed over the years and is available as a complete light sport aircraft (the CC model), a very complete kitset (the EX model) and a builder assist model (the FX model) which takes 7 working days at the factory.

The specifications for the original CC11-160 Carbon Cub are:  length 22 feet 9 inches (6.93 metres), wingspan 34 feet 3 inches (10.44 metres) with a wing area of 171.9 square feet.  The empty weight is 896 pounds (399 Kg) and the MAUW is 1,320 pounds (599 Kg).  With the specially built 180 HP Cub Crafters CC340 engine (based on the O-320), the cruise speed is 88 knots (101 mph) and the stall speed is 27 knots (35 mph).

We have had five Carbon Cubs of various models registered in New Zealand to date:

Our first Carbon Cub was CC11-160 model ZK-BPC3 (c/n CC11-00194) which was registered to Bruce and Peter Clulow of Wanaka on 10/2/12.  It was assembled at hamilton by Central Aero Ltd, and it is photo'd above at Wanaka on 5/4/12.

On 5/12/12 it was re-registered as ZK-PBC2, and it is photo'd above, also at Wanaka on 11/9/19.  There is a nice video of it in action at a very windy Healthy Bastards competition at Omaka at:

Also registered on 10/2/12 was CC11-160 model ZK-CSS2 (c/n CC11-00193), which was registered to Robert J Gray of Bombay.  It is photo'd above at the Pukekohe East airstrip on 2/5/15.  It was sold to an un-named Private owner on 7/12/16 and then on 17/7/18 to W J N Steel of Turangi and most recently on 14/1/19 to Christian A Burtcher of Lake Tekapo.

Carbon Cub CCK-1865 model ZK-CUB3 (c/n CCK-1865-055) was registered to The Lucky Skunks Club of Balfour on 25/11/14.  This was built from a kitset and I think that the 1865 figure refers to the possible MAUW in pounds but it is only certified to 599 Kg (1,320 pounds) here.  It is photo'd above at Mandeville on 11/3/17.

CC11-160 model ZK-KUB (c/n CC11-0318) was imported from Australia where it was 24-8542 and VH-OAA2.  It was cancelled from the Australian register on 20/6/16 and was registered in New Zealand on 19/7/16, to Ardleigh Farms of Geraldine (George and Kathy Hudson).  It was assembled at Wanaka and it is also photo'd there, during the 2018 Warbirds Over Wanaka airshow on 30/3/18.

And the most recent Carbon Cub to be registered here is CCX-2000 model ZK-FXC2 (c/n CCX-2000-0038) which was built from a kitset in the US by Robert Gray (under the FX factory builder assist programme?) and was registered as N442FX on 6/12/18.  It was registered here on 28/3/19 to a Private Owner, and is based at Ardmore.  It is photo'd above at Kaipara Flats airfield on 1/3/20.  I think the FX-2000 coding refers to its MAUW of 2000 pounds and ZK-FXC2 is certified here for 907 Kg MAUW (which is 2000 pounds).

I am sure that we will see more Carbon Cubs in New Zealand in the future.

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